The dust has finally settled. The computer evangelist has envisioned. The strategist has defined. The manager, architect, developer, analyst, and modeler have taken note. The enthusiasm has diminished. The exuberance has turned into a more pragmatic course of action. But what have we learned? Almost a decade has passed since the service-oriented architecture (SOA) paradigm first appeared, extending a pledge to change, repair, enhance, and promote software development best practices. Has this computing trend influenced any of our customary software implementation approaches? Has this new paradigm fostered architecture best practices that have altered the old genre of software construction methodologies? Are we better off?

Yes, the mission to build enduring, reusable, and elastic services that can withstand market volatility and be effortlessly modified to embrace technological changes has been gaining momentum. Governance and best practices have been devised. Existing off-the-shelf products already embody fundamental SOA best practices, such as software reuse, nimbleness, loose coupling, adaptability, interoperability, and consolidation. From a project management perspective, stronger ties have been established between the business institution and information technology (IT) organization. The silo implementation paradigm has been rather weakened, and cross-enterprise initiatives have been moderately increased.

For those organizations that have not been influenced ...

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